Monday, March 11, 2013

MMGM -- Bitopia

Marvelous Middle Grade Monday

Shannon Whitney Messenger decided it was time to give middle grade stories the attention they deserve, and "Marvelous Middle Grade Mondays" was born. 

by Ari Magnuson
Named to Kirkus Reviews' Best of 2012!

When you run from bullies, you never know where you might wind up…

Bitopia is a wonderland of fantastical foliage and mysterious creatures. It’s also a place where Venators lurk, vile creatures that relentlessly hunt children. So the children of Bitopia, the only human inhabitants, are forced to live in a high-walled city for protection, a medieval metropolis of cold and shadow where time passes but no one ages, a place of no escape.

Like all the other children of Bitopia, Stewart arrives there unexpectedly while fleeing from bullies. And, like all Newcomers, Stewart dreams of finding a way back home. Risking exile from the city and the protection that it offers, Stewart and Cora, his Finder, discover a clue to escaping, one that presents them with a terrible choice: face their greatest fear and risk death, or be trapped in Bitopia forever.

A fast-paced adventure that addresses a fundamental element of bullying-fear-and provides readers with an example of how to deal with bullying on their own.
As a teacher AND a mom, I really appreciate this book and its creative approach to bullying. What I love even more, though, is that the message is embedded within a fun and vivid storyline. Kids who love fantasy will enjoy this book just for the story--the anti-bullying message is simply an added bonus.
For all my teacher-writer friends out there, BITOPIA has a great teacher's guide full of strategies for implementing the book into bullying discussions and lessons.


Kittie Howard said...

It's good to see that more and more books are tackling bullying. Here's hoping Biotopia finds a place in the classroom and helps in getting rid of this despicable practice.

Barbara Watson said...

Books that weave a message without readers realizing it are masterpieces.

Old Kitty said...

Sounds wonderful - especially as it tackles bullying in a most creative way too! Take care

Natalie Aguirre said...

Sounds like a good story. And certainly an issue that needs to be dealt with at home and at school.

I featured Ari for a Tuesday Tip a few weeks ago.

DMS said...

Sounds like an excellent book to be used in schools. A fun way to get across an important message. :)

Anonymous said...

Vanators - what a sinister name :)

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